What’s a Fetish? How Can Relationships Include Them?


What’s a Fetish? How Can Relationships Include Them?

A fetish is when someone needs an object or activity to get turned on. They might have a hard time getting turned on unless the fetish is present, incorporated or just thought of. Feet, leather, or tattoos can all be fetishes. Fetishes can also be things you do, like roleplaying or having sex in public.

There are lots of different kinds of fetishes. Some are pretty common! Just like all sexy things, fetishes should always be consensual.

Medical professionals say that a fetish is something that someone needs to get turned on. But lots of people use the word when they talk about specific things they like. Some people also say fetishes are non-sexual things that turn someone on.

What’s the difference between a kink and a fetish?

A kink is any sexy thing that’s considered uncommon. For example, BDSM is a kink. What’s considered kinky depends on who you’re talking to! Using sex toys might not be kinky to you and your friends, but it could be for other people.

A fetish is similar to a kink. The biggest difference is that a fetish has to happen for someone to get turned on. If someone likes to do something, it would be a kink. But if someone has to do something to be sexually satisfied that would be a fetish. Some people with fetishes just need to fantasize about it. Other people need to actually do it.

Even though fetishes and kinks are different, a lot of people talk about them in the same ways. Lots of people use the word ‘fetish’ for things they find really sexy rather than its official definition .

How do I know if I have a fetish?

Not everything that turns someone on is a fetish. But if you think about the same thing every time you masturbate or have sex, you might have one! Everyone deals with their fetishes differently. You can try different things to figure out what you need to feel sexually satisfied.

A fetish is not a sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is about the genders you might be attracted to. A fetish is more specific. It’s an action or thing that turns someone on.

Is having one okay?

Lots of people have fetishes! If you and your partners are excited about a fetish, it can be a healthy part of your sex life.

Because everyone is different, some people might have fetishes that their partners aren’t into. If you’re into something that your partners don’t like, then it’s not okay to pressure them into it.

People might also have fetishes that make them feel bad about themselves. You can talk to a therapist if you have a fetish that makes you upset or one that makes you want to hurt yourself or another person. They can help you find ways to have sex that make you and your partners feel good!

I heard that some people have a fetish for ___. Is that real?

There are lots of fetishes. Some people don’t understand other people’s fetishes. But everyone has different things they find sexy! Some common fetishes are:

  • Feet
  • Leather
  • Roleplaying
  • Spanking
  • Shoes or socks
  • Watching someone else do sexual things
  • Having someone watch you do sexual things

What do I do if my partner has one?

Just because your partner is really into something doesn’t mean you have to be. Sometimes people want different things during sex. That’s okay! You can talk about it and try to find things that you’re both into. You could also decide not to have sex.

Your partners should never pressure you to try something you’re not sure about. If you want to try your partner’s fetish, you can start by researching and fantasizing to see if it makes you excited. Then you can talk to them about what you are and aren’t comfortable with.

How do I try one with my partners?

Communication is important in any relationship. It’s especially important when you’re doing something sexual. If you have a fetish, the first thing you can do is talk about it. You might be into the same things!

Consent and safety are important when you’re trying fetishes. Before you try a fetish, you and your partners can talk about consent and boundaries. As a part of this, you can talk about any safety risks and ways you want to lower them. You can also talk about what you’ll do if something goes wrong.

Lots of people have partners that love their fetishes and have a lot of fun! If you’re worried about your fetish hurting yourself or someone else then you can talk to a therapist.

More info

Sexual Fetishism

A wikipedia article explaining the history, prevalence, and types of fetishes.


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